A 55t Challenger hits our shores
The first 2 examples of a new series of Terex all terrain cranes have arrived in Australia, and these offer significant points of difference to other machines in the 55t capacity class.
Visually the Challenger 3160 cranes have significant differences to previous Terex/Demag all terrain cranes with a new and more modern style of cab on both the carrier and upper, but it is the crane specifications, and the philosophy behind them, that will mean the most to users.
All terrain cranes in the 55t class have been a growing segment of the crane market in Australia and overseas for some time. It is where the truck crane market meets the all terrain crane market, yet there are significant differences in the truck and all terrain cranes in this class.
The truck crane carrier has 4 axles where the all terrain carrier has 3 axles. The all terrain crane is shorter and has all wheel steer, making it considerably more manoeuvrable than a truck crane of similar capacity. This comes at a price, so there are some markets that suit the truck crane and others that suit the all terrain crane. In markets where space on site can be at a premium, the all terrain crane really comes into its own.
The truck crane has generally been a taxi crane (so named because it will generally arrive on site, set up quickly, perform a single lift or small number of lifts, and then move on to another site, much as a taxi does with passengers in the course of a day).
The two features that most assist work as a taxi crane are the long main boom (50m) and the ability to lower this boom below the horizontal so that the hook block can be reeved from the ground or the machinery runner jib can be fitted.
The long main boom larger renders a fly jib unnecessary, and speeds set-up on site for lifts towards the limit of vertical or horizontal reach capacity. The ground level reeving is not only faster but also considerably safer than doing this at heights, and will appeal to site safety officers.
The machinery runner jib is a useful option in some situations. Although it does not add a lot to horizontal reach, it increases the height under the hook in situations where there is limited headroom, for applications such as standing panels or poles. The capacity of 23.9t is also quite useful.